Good Bacteria Supplements –
Probiotics Create A Healthy Life Gut Check

Good bacteria living in your gut could be one of the keys to good health. Researchers are finding that this "friendly bacteria", known as probiotic bacteria, helps to not only stimulate digestive health, but also a healthy immune system.

Probiotics are dietary supplements of live bacteria or yeasts thought to be healthy for the host organism. By definition, probiotics are live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the intestinal host. Note that foods that contain probiotic bacteria are also often referred to as probiotics (e.g. yogurt) but they succumb to acid while still in the stomach.

A quality probiotic supplement delivers guaranteed live probiotics (good bacteria) through the stomach into the intestine where they promote colon health by supporting the growth of healthy microflora naturally found in the colon.

To supply live probiotics to their intended target, the supplement must be uniquely designed in a capsule that is guaranteed to withstand the acidic environment of the stomach. Also the product must allow for much greater attachment and growth rate of the friendly (healthy) bacteria in order to minimize the growth of harmful bacteria.

New research shows good bacteria in the gut is a key to good health

Medical researchers are finding that one of the keys to good health could be tied directly to the good bacteria living in our guts – specifically, in the world of microbes that live in our digestive tracts.

Historically, until about 2001, probiotics were considered only within the realm of complementary and alternative medicine. As our understanding of the immune system and how it works has expanded, so has the understanding of the importance of probiotics and probiotic microbes in the gastrointestinal tract in regulating the immune system.

One of the country's leading researchers into the world of probiotics is Gary Huffnagle, Ph.D., of the University of Michigan Health System, a professor of internal medicine and microbiology and immunology. He has published more than 90 articles about microbes and the immune system in peer-reviewed scientific journals, academic reviews and textbooks. He is the co-author of The Probiotics Revolution: The Definitive Guide to Safe, Natural Health Solutions Using Probiotic and Prebiotic Foods and Supplements.

Huffnagle's research documents the key role of good bacteria probiotics and prebiotics in restoring healthy balance to our bodies, improving immune system functioning, and curbing inflammation.

He advocates the use of probiotic foods and supplements to prevent and relieve allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, yeast infections, and the negative side effects of antibiotic use.

He presents new evidence that probiotics may help fight asthma, cardiovascular disease, breast and colon cancer, autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, gout, etc), chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia—and even obesity (a factor in joint pain and overall health).

New evidence that good bacteria fights many diseases

“We’re now finding that eliminating all the good microbes from our body results in a weaker immune system, which we believe is leading to problems such as increased incidence of chronic disease, including allergies like asthma,” Huffnagle says. “Once you take antibiotics as your physician prescribed, follow it with some form of probiotic supplement to get the microflora in your gut back to where it should be. Your recovery and your health will be much greater.”

Since probiotic microbes do not cause disease, there’s no such thing as having too much of them.

Huffnagle says that until we are born, we are completely sterile of microbes. Once outside the womb, we are bombarded by microbes and soon we have 10 times more microbes in our body than the number of cells that make up the human body.

"Today, the world of probiotics is emerging on the cutting-edge of mainstream medicine," Huffnagle says.

Good bacteria (microbes) and bad bacteria (microbes)

It is the bad microbes that cause disease. Good microbes work with the body’s immune system to keep the bad microbes at bay by crowding them out. In the symbiotic relationship between good and bad microbes, recent research has uncovered the importance of these good microbes.

“The good microbes – and this is where probiotics come in – keep the bad microbes in small numbers. But they also stimulate the immune system and improve our digestive function. That’s the subject of research that has been going on for years,” Huffnagle says.

Probiotics -- good bacteria

Probiotics are bacteria that we eat and they’re good for our health. They are found in a number of foods that are readily available in the supermarket, and they taste good. You can support probiotic growth by increasing the amount of cultured dairy products you eat, such as cheeses and yogurt, and the foods that encourage probiotics from these dairy products to multiply even further: spices, tea, red wine, berries, apples and beans.

Huffnagle says that most of these good microbes exist within our body in the digestive tract, with the largest number occurring in the small and large intestines.

“It’s the job of these good microbes to stimulate our immune system, and the other job they do is to stimulate good digestive health,” he says.

Antibiotics and good bacteria

We inadvertently kill off the good microbes in our body with antibiotics. Since antibiotics are necessary for killing the bad microbes that cause some diseases, they are important for helping to keep people healthy. However, the side effect to taking antibiotics is the elimination of the good bacteria (microbes) within our body along with the bad ones.

He says that antibiotics are important for fighting disease and should always be taken according to physician recommendations.

Huffnagle's research focuses on one of the greatest unknown questions about probiotics: How do they work?

"We are examining how microbes in the gut communicate with the immune system. Many diseases have an immunologic basis, so we want to understand the good communication that goes on between the microbes and the immune system," he says.

Good bacteria and obesity

Another emerging topic of research examines a possible link between good bacteria probiotics and obesity, and a number of researchers around the country are starting to look at this connection.

"We should have known that probiotics and the gut microflora play a role in metabolism " it's a connection that's been known in the agriculture industry for years," Huffnagle says.

"Agriculture experts quickly noted that sick livestock gained weight when dosed with antibiotics, leading to the industry practice of routinely rotating various low-dose antibiotics in livestock feed. Huffnagle says the antibiotics actually change the metabolism of the animals, creating something called 'enhanced feed efficiency'", an improved ability to retain fat.

"We take the antibiotics to recover from a microbial illness, but the trade-off is that fat we eat may be staying with us instead of being metabolized and converted to energy," Huffnagle says.

Optimizing good bacteria balance

Here are three things that will help optimize your good bacteria balance:

  1. Diet. Eat a balanced diet that is low in fat and high in fiber, and abundant in a variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes.
  2. Exercise. The link between regular exercise and improved health is well documented.
  3. Nutritional Support. By supplementing with prebiotic nutrients (which selectively feed “good” bacteria) plus augmenting the populations of naturally occurring beneficial microorganisms with probiotics, the normal healthy balance of intestinal microflora can be supported and maintained.

How to find a nutritional supplement company you can trust

It is of utmost importance to choose a manufacturer of good bacteria probiotic supplements carefully. Find a company that has a large staff of scientists and voluntarily does clinical studies and pre-market testing on its products to ensure their efficacy. Natural supplements are often tried for many conditions based on tradition, anecdotes, or marketing, but not all of these uses are supported by reliable or credible scientific research.

To help with the process of how to choose the best dietary supplement company, a list of questions has been prepared by our website. To view these, click on the following link: 30 questions.

Good bacteria (probiotics) means "healthful for life"

Most probiotic supplements are good bacteria similar to those naturally found in people's guts, especially in those of breastfed infants (who have natural protection against many diseases). Most often, the bacteria come from two groups, Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium. Within each group, there are different species (for example, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium bifidus), and within each species, different strains (or varieties).

Probiotics help to maintain healthy intestinal microbial balance. The term literally means “healthful for life,” and today, probiotics has a broader definition: a live microbial supplement which beneficially affects the host by improving its microbial balance.

Featured good bacteria supplement

This probiotics supplement is available as a system of two products or as a probiotic individually. Click on each link below to order or for more information.

Product One (Prebiotic)—4 grams A pleasant-tasting drink mix that contains 4 grams of dietary fiber and features FOS and Jerusalem artichoke to selectively feed the friendly bacteria, and gamma tocopherol to help reduce levels of potentially toxic oxidation products in the colon.

Poduct Two (Probiotic)—500 million The prebiotic above is taken with the probiotic, a unique, seamless capsule that is guaranteed to withstand the acidic environment of the stomach and deliver 500 million live beneficial microflora (250 million each of bifidobacterium longum (bididus) and lactobacillus acidophilus (acidophilus) to the intestine.

Pre-biotic/Pro-biotic together as system.

Other unique features and benefits include:

  • No artificial flavors, sweeteners, colors, or preservatives have been added.
  • Caffeine free.
  • Refreshing, mild sweet flavor.
  • No refrigeration is nessary (refrigeration may maintain activity longer).
  • Patented triple-encapsulation uses only natural ingredients to protect microflora until they are released in the intestine.
  • Seamless outer shell protects microflora against somach acid.
  • Middle layer protects against oxygen and moisture.
  • Inner core holds and protects microflora until they are released in the intestine.

Try one or more of the above probiotic supplements and see if these natural, safe treatments work for you.

Good Bacteria Disclaimer: Health statements on this good bacteria page have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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